Stephen Wilhite, the creator of the GIF, has passed away

Stephen Wilhite, aged 74, has passed away. Wilhite created the Graphics Interchange Format, better known as GIF, while working as a developer for early online service CompuServe.

Wilhite pronounced it "JIF."


A true netizen, he eschewed most interviews and public appearances until 2013, when he was honored with a lifetime achievement award at the Webbys, awards presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences to people who've impacted the internet.
In lieu of a speech, he instead accepted the award with a GIF, soundtracked to Strauss's "Also sprach Zarathustra": "IT'S PRONOUNCED 'JIF' NOT 'GIF.'"